18th Annual Orange Beach Billfish Classic

Are you ready for a new adventure?  Join the top anglers in the country and lots of cheering fans at the 18th Annual Orange Beach Billfish Classic.  This event takes place out of the marina at The Wharf.  The events start on the 18th of May and go through the 22nd.  You can keep track of your favorite team and check often for their weigh-ins.  The fishing starts at noon on the 19th and goes until weigh in on at 11 AM on the 22nd. There is a Weigh in on Saturday also on Saturday from 6 until 10 PM.  So come enjoy all the fun activities at The wharf and then see if your favorite team won the big prize!  Below are all the details from the Orange Beach Billfish Classic Website.

First of the Gulf Coast tournament season and the kickoff tournament of the Gulf Coast Triple Crown Championship series.  The Orange Beach Billfish Classic was formed in 1998 for the express purpose of providing financial support for organizations that speak effectively for all recreational fishermen. The OBBC quickly became a top event on the Gulf Coast tournament circuit and serves as an important fundraiser for The Billfish Foundation and the Coastal Conservation Association (CCA). In 2011, over $50,000 was donated to these organizations, bringing the total contributed over the history of the tournament to over $500,000.

2014- Triple Crown trophy
2014- Triple Crown trophy

The OBBC is the country’s only non-profit billfish tournament with 100% of all net profit donated to qualified 501(c)(3) conservation organizations. The OBBC is an all-volunteer effort so there is no overhead to deduct from the financial support that’s provided to our conservation beneficiaries.

Beginning in 2013, The Wharf Marina Entertainment Complex hosted the Orange Beach Billfish Classic for the first time, and hosted the tournament again in 2014 and 2015. Over the course of the four day event, the crews, anglers and participants enjoy a series of fun and food-filled events, with a Captain’s Meeting on Wednesday evening and culminating with an awards brunch on Sunday morning. The organizers look forward to a big turnout this year in order to continue to support the organizations that fight for our resources.

10361061_634166736676009_1355216962380415182_n“I’d like to take a minute to personally invite everyone to join us for the 2016 Orange Beach Billfish Classic,” Dorland said in a recent interview. “Our staff will welcome you with open arms and we’ll all do our best to show you what a great experience this event has become, from the great fishing to our world-famous Gulf Coast hospitality. Come fishing with us this year — you won’t be disappointed.”

Interested participants are welcome to contact Dorland personally at (251) 402-8190 for more information.

Orange Beach Billfish Classic schedule of events is as follows.
Wednesday, May 18th• 4-11 pm: Registration and Optional Cash Awards open under the big tent • 6 pm: Cocktails and Hors d ’Oeuvres • 7 pm: Dinner • 8-11 pm: Optional Cash Awards Pot Party 2016

Schedule Of Events Thursday, May 19th • 10:00 am: Mandatory Captain’s Meeting under the big tent • 10:30 am: Boats may leave The Wharf through Perdido Bay to Perdido Pass • 12 noon: Boats may leave Perdido Pass. Any boat choosing to leave through Sailboat Bay may not leave The Wharf Marina until NOON, May 19th • 12 noon: Fishing Commences Friday, May 20th • 7-10 pm: Weigh in at The Wharf Saturday, May 21st • 6-10 pm: Weigh in at The Wharf Sunday, May 22nd • 9-11 am: Tournament Awards Breakfast

 

Delta Wildlife Boat Eco Tour

A don’t miss trip for nature lovers big and small take a Delta Safari!  This charter departs daily from Tacky Jacks in Gulf Shores and tours the scenic and historical and Mobile Delta system.  You can learn local history enjoy beautiful scenery and learn about our unique ecosystem and the animals that live here on this family friendly hour and a half trip.

Experience the swamps of the lower Mobile-Tensaw Delta on this highly rated wildlife tour. This is the “must do” tour for all avid lovers of nature and its creatures when visiting Mobile, Alabama. The Mobile-Tensaw Delta is Mobile’s biggest jewel – If you do nothing else, take this trip!

TOUR COST: Adult: $19.99, Child (6-15): $14.99, Under 5: FREE.20160328_165924
DEPARTS: Daily. Charters available 7 days.
LENGTH: 1.5 hours. Reservations suggested.

As we float among the open Marsh watching for a variety of wildlife including Alligators, Bald Eagle, Osprey, Heron, Cormorant, Pelicans, Nutria and more, learn about these unique animals of the swamp and how they live. Commentary includes points on the history, geology, ecology and characters of the Delta, as well as Alabama State Lands mission in the Mobile-Tensaw Delta and the ‘Forever Wild’ program.

Perfect for children of all ages, Delta Safaris operates over 100 school field trips annually – we know kids and welcome yours aboard. For Children 5 and Under, please email us after booking and we will add their FREE tickets to your booking.

All commentary provided by experienced Delta Nature Guides.

Includes: The best eco-tour in Alabama, showing off the best delta eco-system in the USA. As seen in National Geographic – Adventure Magazine, Southern Living Magazine and on National Morning Shows.

Operates: Additional tours are offered on busy days. This public tour operates 5 days a week from February 15 – December 31st each year. From January 7 – February 14, it operates on Saturdays and Sundays only. Closed on Easter Sunday, Thanksgiving Day and Christmas Day. Private Group Charters available year round. Book Online above, Call: (251) 259-8531 or Email: info@5RDS.com for more information.

Delta Safaris is the only State of Alabama authorized Concessionaire offering tours of the Mobile-Tensaw Delta, Bottle Creek Indian Mounds and Champion Cypress. We believe in a Leave No Trace policy, in educating and preserving these amazing jewels for future generations.

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Policies & Disclaimers:
Cancellation Policy: Rainchecks will be provided in the event of inclement weather. Unsafe passage call will be made by Captain on day of event. All other cancellations require 24 hour notice for refund.

What to Bring: Comfortable clothing, cameras and binoculars. Packed food and drink is welcome on board – no glass containers please.

Should I Tip?: Tips are not required but are graciously received. Our guides strive hard to educate and entertain. Please let your guides know how they did.GS Sunset

Cancellations: Rainchecks will be provided in the event of inclement weather. An unsafe passage call will be made by Captain on day of event. All other cancellations require 24 hour notice for refund.

Be sure to call and book your trip to enjoy this unique trip with your family!

Rainy Summer Vacation

It is that time of year  We are getting tons of calls from people planning their summer vacation.  It is also the time of year for us to get tons of rain. Unfortunately, travel insurance does not cover if you have a rainy summer vacation , but just because its rainy does not limit your fun things to do in the area.  We wanted to give you a few hits and helpful tips over the next few weeks so you will be completely prepared for your trip no matter what happens. This week I just wanted to talk to you about an alternate plan.

You never know from one day to the next what will happen on your vacation so the biggest tip is to be FLEXIBLE…  Flexibility will save hurt feelings, and bad attitudes from taking over the trip.  A little extra planning will allow for seamless transitions if it rains or if your group has just had enough sun for that week. Lucky you are on the Gulf coast it is the place to be when its rainy outside!

If you are just a group of adults looking for some great activities when it rains on your vacation.  Everything from shopping at the outlet mall or beach souvenir stores to Local cultural experiences at one of the many theaters or museums in the area.  Of course there is always a choice of movies and we have two movie theaters in the area  The Cobb Pinnacle Theaters, and Carmike Cinemas at the Wharf.  

When it rains on your summer vacation and you are planning for the ever-board teens that are here with you try Blond Johns for all of their surfing dreams.  Or if surfing and skating are not on their radar and movies or shopping is not their thing visit Adventure Island they have indoor laser tag and an arcade.  Or you could try Arena Next Play at the Wharf, or the indoor arcades at Waterville, or The Track.

Children have the most selections by far on rainy summer vacation days.  So when planning if you have little ones all you need to know is what they are interested in.  Of course just like above there are movie options shopping and arcades.  But specifically for kids or anyone interested in science or animals check out the Esturairum at The Dauphin Island Sea Lab. The Esturarium is just a quick ferry ride away over to Dauphin Island.  If you are up for a little bit of a car ride take a day trip to Mobile or Pensacola.  In Mobile those science lovers in the family would enjoy The

Rainy Summer Vacation ideas
Rainy Summer Vacation ideas

href=”https://www.exploreum.com/”>Gulf Coast Exploreum Science Center.  With rotating exhibits throughout the year this is a fantastic place to spend the day for the entire family.

Our all time favorite spot to direct families to is the Naval Air Station in Pensacola Museum.  It is free to the public although they always accept donations.  The museum has more planes that you can see in a day in every corner and even hanging from the ceiling.  History surrounds you at every turn and even in the cafe.  They have flight simulators, cockpit trainers, and a virtual flight deck.  Not to mention the Blue Angel’s practice here.  The 325-seat giant screen theater features the latest in state-of-the-art motion picture projection. The theater has upgraded from 70mm film projection to stunning premium laser-illuminated 2D projection system boasting full 4K resolution—nearly 9 million pixels on-screen—the first of its kind installed in an institutional theater.

So no worries!  There is plenty to do on rainy summer vacation it just takes a little planning ahead.  You will be sure to have the best vacation no matter what the weather happens to do while you are on vacation.

 

 

Portabella’s, A Don’t Miss Resturant in Foley!

After a very long day two, stressed out women were on a hunt for some great dinner!  We decided to give a new place a try and it was the perfect decision.  This hole in the wall restaurant holds up to it’s name.  It is not fancy on the inside or overlooking the water or some serene park but it doesn’t matter.  The inviting atmosphere and friendly local staff make you feel at home in the newly renovated restaurant.

Portabella’s is located in the heart of historic Foley on hwy 59 on the east side of the road.  Almost at the end of the historic district it shares a building with the Foley Fish Company.  There is parking in front and just to the South of the building.  As you enter the glass front doors you can enjoy a view out the large plate glass windows in front that have a view of 59 and all of the comings and going in town.

As we came in our friendly waiter welcomed us in and offered us nay table in the place.  He brought us menu’s and some great sweet tea.  After we perused the menu for a while we decided to each get a salad and to share a pizza.  Not just a basic pizza we actually asked for a half meat and half what was most closely called a supreme pizza.  I got the Spinach Salad with the house green onion vinaigrette dressing.  This salad was beautifully fresh spinach, feta cheese, olives, pecans, and a little red onion and the dressing.  I could have had just a giant plate of this salad and been very very happy.  It was a fantastic flavor combination and I will absolutely get it again!  My mom who came to dinner with me got a basic house salad that was mixed greens, cheese, bacon, tomato and croutons.  She loved her salad as much as I did.

Now for the main dish our pizza!  It was a beautiful 14 inch pizza half covered in meat.  It is called The Lion!  Sausage, pepperoni, ham, bacon, and prosciutto on top of this pizza worthy of the carnivore .  It was unique in that the meat was all amazing not the norm that you would get on a chain meat Pizza.  The other half of our pizza was a “Foley.”   The “Foley” includes peppers, onions, olives, mushrooms, pepperoni, sausage.  Again with beautifully fresh veggies and uniquely fresh meat the “Foley”only honors this community with it’s goodness.

There is always a soup of the day, great salad menu.  Sandwiches with the same beautiful ingredients that were on our pizza and even healthier lighter choices.  Oh, and pasta!  I am going to try some pasta sometime soon.  So as you are coming in on that shopping day you make to Foley, don’t miss Portabella’s. Instead of sitting in traffic pull over and have a great dinner at this don’t miss yummy Italian jewel to our community.

American Fun, The Perfect Little House For Your Getaway!

This is a quaint two story house, close to the Dunes Community Pool, and NEWLY updated in 2012. There is plenty of room for the family in this 1,600 Sq Ft 3 bedroom, 3 bath duplex.  The beach beckons to you from behind the houses just 150 yards away.  You get sneak peaks of a view from both balconies and a really nice view off to the West of the Sunset.

American Fun 3
American Fun 4

                                                                                             As you enter the house you will notice the spacious living room with ocean colored walls and modern furniture. The couch is a sleeper sofa.

American Fun1

 The adjoined dining area has a table for 6 with additional seating at the kitchen bar. The fully stocked, fully equipped kitchen with full size appliances is perfect for cooking your favorite seafood dishes at meal time. The floors are tiled throughout except for the bedrooms. Right off of the kitchen is the “lavender” room that has a King size bed and access to a shared bathroom.

American Fun 2

Upstairs to the left is the kid’s room with two twin beds and a full private bath. The Gulf facing Master bedroom has a King bed with its own private bath as well as access to a balcony. Each room has its own TV. This house also has underneath parking. As a guest of the Dunes Community, you have access to the Dunes Community pool and hot tub as well as the Dunes Condo pool, hot tub, sauna, and work out facility.

This house rents from Saturday to Saturday during the spring and summer, but is available for shorter stays outside of these times. Give us a call for pricing on less than weekly stays 1-888-877-9270!

Fishing In Fort Morgan

It is time to come Fishing!!! Fort Morgan is one of the areas favorite fishing destinations.
With the pass just at the end of the island, the Gulf on one said and the quiet waters of the bay on the other side of the island, I can see why our tiny little hidaway is the perfect place to some fish.  March 15th was the start of the Alabama’s Gulf Coast for Pompano, Flounder, Mackerel, Whiting and a Cobia Tournament this tournament goes until April 30th.  There are people out fishing everyday in this tournament vieing for the best catch.  If you are a pier fishing enthausiest now is the time to be in Gulf Shores.  Not only can you try for the largest fish but once you have it weighed and measured you can have it cooked to order by one of our great Fort Morgan resturants like Tacky Jacks or Sassy Bass.

There is another local  tournament  The Captian Hook Classic Fishing Tournament May 11th, 2013.  This tournament added a new category this year of kayak fishing.  So all of you kayak fishermen this is the tournament for you.  It takes place here in Fort Morgan.  Hurry and sign up soon so you can catch your next monster.  Call us to book your fishing getaway today!

HANGOUT FEST 2013

It is almost time for Hangout Fest 2013  grab your towel, sunscreen and some cash and head down to the Public beach in Gulf Shores for a fantastic line-up of artists, ready to entertain you all weekend long.  There are a couple of things you need to know first!

Ticket Prices!!!

SHUTTLESPARKING
There is no parking at the festival, we encourage everyone to use our shuttle system.

Hangout Shuttles are the best option to avoid traffic congestion that occurs around the festival entrance.  We’ve got these shuttles dialed in to offer you the fastest and easiest way to get to site!

And with the Golden Shuttle program you will have a chance to win awesome prizes including VIP upgrades and festival merchandise.  All you have to do is get on the bus!

Shuttle Passes are ON SALE NOW!

How about a line up for the weekend!  Check out who is joining us in Gulf Shores this year.  Oh, and that blurred out one is Stevie Wonder!!!!

This year we are promised many surprises and new things one of them is a Art Contest!

So you have your tickets you have your shuttle passes you have your towel, sunscreen, sunglasses and cash.  Wait a minute you need a place sleep.  Unfortunately as fun as it sounds they police won’t let you sleep on the beach in Gulf Shores.  We have an amazing deal for you though!!!

Stay 3 nights in a 1 bedroom condo only $599.00
Stay 3 nights in a 2 bedroom condo only $699.00
Stay 3 nights in a 3 bedroom condo only $799.00

Come for the party and enjoy the beach, don’t forget your camera, swimsuit and sunscreen!  We will see you in MAY!!!

It’s Almost Spring Break!!!!

This year is flying bye.  Ok kids, Spring Break is upon us!!!!!  Have you made your plans yet???  Now is the time!  I know if you are basically anywhere north of the Gulf Coast you have had a very cold wet winter and you are probably ready for some lovely sunshine.

Maybe some warm days and a trip to the beach?  Now is the time to book.  we are just two weeks away from our first Spring Break visitors arriving and we have set some specials!  If a fishing trip is in your future either off the beach or from a boat Ft. Morgan is the place to be!

Just some fun family time is exactly what your want for Spring Break.  Relaxing on the, beach playing in the water, or enjoying the local nature it all can be done here in Ft. Morgan.  It is bird migration time and are flowers are already blooming!

Stay 3 nights in a 1 bedroom condo only $599.00
Stay 3 nights in a 2 bedroom condo only $699.00
Stay 3 nights in a 3 bedroom condo only $799.00

Stay 5 Nights in a 1 bedroom condo only $899.00
Stay 5 Nights in a 2 bedroom condo only $999.00
Stay 5 Nights in a 3 bedroom condo only $1099.00

Stay 7 nights in a 1 bedroom condo only
$1199.00
Stay 7 nights in a 1 bedroom condo only
$1399.00
Stay 7 nights in a 1 bedroom condo only
$1499.00

Give us a call to book today and then grab your little guys and head our way!  we look forward to helping you plan your trip!

A Runner’s Paradise…Sunset Properties

NOTE:  We have a guest Blogger for this post, Road Runner Girl,  Mindy,  joined us with her family and wrote a blog for us of her adventures.  Hope you enjoy this as much as I did!!!

This weekend we headed to the beach for a mini-vacation. You would think since we live on the Gulf Coast that we would visit the beach more often. But sadly we do not. I was super excited about getting in some rest and relaxation with my wonderful family!

We were staying at The Dunes Condos in Fort Morgan, AL. These condos are a part of Sunset Properties and are fabulous!

So after my long run, we headed south. It takes us a little over an hour to get there but it’s paradise once we are there! Before we made it to our destination we stopped to walk on the beach. Unfortunately it was super super windy (I’m talking 25 mph winds) and it was hard to enjoy the beach as much as we would have liked. It was also cold…and the wind made it colder. But we didn’t let the chill spoil our fun too bad. We still walked around, took some pictures, and collected some seashells.

The red and purple flags were flying. A red flag means the surf is dangerous and to swim with caution. A purple flag means there is dangerous marine life in the water. Hmmm…I was kinda glad it was too cold to swim. I didn’t want my boys going into the water with these flags flying!

After we had enough of the wind and cold we climbed back into the warm car and headed to Sunset Properties! Everyone was so excited!

Sunset Properties has several properties to choose from. They have two condominiums that overlook the Gulf of Mexico…The Dunes and The Indies. What’s really awesome about these condos is they have a gulf view from your room…and the front part of the building has a view of Mobile Bay. Sunset Properties also has a property located on a marina…Navy Cove…so you can park your boat and stay in luxury! They also have beach houses available that can sleep from 9 to 19 people. So you can find any type of beach front accommodations that you are looking for at Sunset Properties!

The Dunes building looks very “beachy!” It is a pinkish or coral color.
We were staying in a one bedroom condo that sleeps 6. It had two bathrooms. It had a fully equipped kitchen. There was even a washer and dryer! Perfect for my two boys and me and my hubby!

The condo was decorated soooo nice! It had a touch of home with a beachy feel. LOVE!!! As soon as we opened the door we were greeted by this cute display in the foyer. The boys loved the chair with the fish on top of each corner!

I absolutely LOVED the red couch in the living room area! I told Andy we needed a red couch!

The boys were so excited about getting to sleep in bunk beds. Of course we had a fight over who would sleep in the top bunk. A quick game of pick a number from 1-10 solved it…and Hayden won. The best part…each bunk had it’s own TV equipped with DVD players and game jacks! The boys stayed in bed the entire time we were inside the condo!!!

The master bedroom was gorgeous! And I LOVED the king size bed! Andy and I have a queen size bed at home so it was a luxury to us! And we enjoyed watching a movie in bed on the large TV.

Another favorite of the boys was the private balcony! It was a little cold to stay out there for long but the boys loved going out there and being able to see the gorgeous view of the beach and the pool below.

Most importantly the condo was super clean. The sheets and towels looked brand new. The floors didn’t leave dirty marks on my socks when I walked around (hey that’s important to me lol). Even the balcony door was spotless…no fingerprints or smudges anywhere! The kitchen counters, sink, stove, and refrigerator were spotless. I truly felt at home!
So what did we do on our beach vacation? That night we headed into Gulf Shores for some dinner. The boys wanted pizza so we ate at Papa’s Pizza. It was really good and we had a blast playing “I Spy” with the boys while we enjoyed our dinner. After dinner we headed back to the condo and the boys watched a movie in bed and so did me and Andy! Perfect relaxation!
After a wonderful night of rest (that bed was so comfy) I got dressed for a quick recovery run! I was a little sore from Saturday’s 12 miles but I couldn’t resist running along the beach! The scenery was breathtaking along the road! And the road was perfect for running! There isn’t a whole lot of traffic and there is a wide enough space on the side of the road for runners or cyclists.
You can see our condo behind me!
The condo is set back about 300 yards from the Gulf of Mexico so there is a nice little road to walk (or in the peak season you can ride their golf cart limousine) to get to the private beach. Well forget walking…I ran it! You can see The Indies condo building behind me and all the beach houses all around me. The Dunes community is so gorgeous!
Then of course I took my route out onto the actual sand. I’ve never run on the sand before…it is really hard lol! If it had been warmer I would have definitely run barefoot! It was awesome hearing the waves as I ran!
I ended up only running a mile…but it was the perfect recovery run. And I couldn’t have asked for a better place to run!!!
There are also several trails I saw along Fort Morgan Road. Next time I would like to check those out!
After my run we headed to explore Fort Morgan. Yes there is an actual Fort about 1.5 miles down the road from the condo! The boys had a blast exploring the fort and learning some history of our area!
Overall, our stay at Sunset Properties was amazing! We will definitely stay here again! And as a runner this is the perfect place to stay! You can run on the road, on trails, and on the beach!
I would love to bring some of my Sole2Soul Sisters here for a “run retreat!” It would be so much fun to relax and run in a different place!
If you are ever looking for somewhere to visit and stay on the Alabama Gulf Coast then definitely check out Sunset Properties! I know they will have what you are looking for! I highly recommend them!
In addition to their website, be sure to check out Sunset Properties on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, and Google+!
Disclaimer: I received a free night’s stay through Sunset Properties. I received no other compensation. All opinions in the above post are mine and mine alone!
 
Mindy

Top 5 Beaches or Cruise for your vacation???

Thanks to AL.com for the information on our beautiful area being rated as one of the Top 5 Gulf Coast Beaches.  While we were celebrating this wonderful accolade the disabled cruise ship the Carnival Triumph was being towed past us at the end of the island carrying 4000 vacationers!  Our hearts couldn’t help but be sad for them and what they have experienced during a time when they were supposed to be relaxing and making wonderful family memories.

Our hope is no matter where you choose to cavation that your trip is worry free and full of fun memories!  When doing your considering consider our beautiful beaches in Ft. Morgan!!!  Check out this great article below on why our beaches are not to be missed.  Then give us a call and book your worry free vacation.
GULF SHORES, Alabama — Together, Baldwin County’s beach cities were named one of the top 5 “Best Gulf Coast Beaches” by the Travel Channel.
Gulf Shores and Orange Beach were joined by Galveston Island State Park in Texas, West Ship Island in Mississippi, and two Florida cities, Destin and St. George Island.

On the Travel Channel’s website, it mentions how the Gulf Coast region has rebounded from the 2010 BP oil spill. “Today, the charming seaside towns and sugary white sands are again beckoning travelers with promises of emerald waters, brilliant white beaches, picturesque sand dunes with waving sea oats, excellent nature hikes and ample bird-watching,”

For Pleasure Island, the article says that for some Alabama may seem to play second fiddle to the Florida Panhandle. “Oh, but they should reconsider.”  It highlights attractions such as Gulf State Park, and the popular public beach in Gulf Shores and mentions kid-friendly beach entertainment such as Adventure Island and Waterville USA.